Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Save the Los Angeles Public Library System!

St. Patrick's Day seemed to arrive a day early as a few dozen L.A.P.L. supporters donned their favorite green outfits and turned out at the L.A.City Council meeting in Downtown this morning. Wearing green (or blue) to show solidarity with the L.A. Librarians' Guild, many spoke during the public comments section of the need to preserve vital library services for all patrons.

For those of us with an interest in the quality of youth services across the city, we should be especially concerned about the effects of lay-offs on the central and southern regions. The youth services librarians in these areas are among the newest hires in the L.A.P.L. system. If they are let go, their positions will either go unfilled, or adult services librarians would likely replace them. Neither option does these kids justice.

Across the city, kids need to access books, computers, and enriching programs. More hours equal more opportunities. More opportunities equal more of a future.

Please consider joining us at City Hall again next Wednesday, March 24th, at 10:00am to give voice to the importance of protecting our library system. Councilmember Tom LaBonge encouraged us to bring as many people as we can. If you can't make it, Mr. LaBonge also stated that "snail mail" is more effective than email in making an impact. Wear green, or blue, and be prepared for a stimulating time.

The Echo Park "Lady of the Lake" says "No more library cuts!" as L.A. library advocate and children's book author/illustrator Leo Politi watches over her in a detail from a mural in the Edendale Branch Library. After a great day at City Hall, my family and I enjoyed a LACMA-led art class at this supercool branch.

Finally, I ended my "library-loving" day at the Echo Park Branch, where Adult Services Librarian Erica Silverman organized a mesmerizing "Music and Munchies" evening with the UCLA Gluck String Quartet. Bravo!
Please visit the Save the Library website to ensure the preservation of quality programming in our libraries.

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